It was good to meet you and talk to you a little in Accra last July at the 20th Anniversary celebrations of our church in Ghana. Since then I have bought some of your books and have just finished “Is There A God?”, which I learnt a lot from but need to study again. The information on the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics and the implications for life appearing by chance seemed to me to be an unanswerable argument against the “by chance” theories.
Now on page 174 of your book you talk about the evidence, or the lack of it, for Noah’s Ark. I want to tell you of a TV programme I saw in the UK about 8 years ago or so. It was a documentary and showed people on a recent expedition in Turkey looking for the Ark. They found what appeared to be a large boat-shaped object buried at ground level at some place in the mountains, but they were not allowed to do any excavations on it by the Turkish authorities. In the same programme they showed an enormous sea-anchor about the height of a man that they had found just lying on the ground somewhere in Turkey. Modern day fishermen use these also, but the ones they use are only about a foot tall, they said; however, the shape is identical to the big one. Both use a conical shape, rounded at the bottom, with a large hole near the top for a rope to pass through. Surely the big sea-anchor could only have been used by the Ark? Have you heard about this?
I have seen dozens of articles and books by people claiming to have discovered the ark. Without exception, all of these have proved to be either outright hoaxes (most common) or they prove to be completely debunked by those who look closely at the evidence. I believe that the possibility of anyone finding remnants of the ark after several thousand years in a form which could be shown to be the ark is truly remote. Wood rots over time. Several thousand year old wood is almost never found. Logically, Noah’s family would have used the wood for fuel or building in any case. These searches are a waste of time, in my opinion. That is just my opinion, and I do not want to force that opinion on others, but that is my conclusion from both common sense and from the plethora of bogus ark-find claims. I probably have seen the article you refer to, but these claims are so common that it is hard to keep up with them, so I cannot say for sure whether I have looked at this one. I invite you to send me the evidene for comment if you like. An e-copy or a web site would be fine.
As for an anchor, yes, I have seen this claim. There are three problems with this.
1. Almost certainly the ark did not have an anchor. What would the use have been for an anchor? They floated around until the ark came to rest on dry land.
2. Besides, if you found an anchor, how would you know it came from Noah’s ark? A rule of science is that the theorist must spin alternative hypotheses. Surely there are many more likely explanations of this object, other than that it came from the ark.
3. Clearly, they did not have iron back then.
Between all these problems we are pretty much 100% guaranteed that the claim to have discovered the ark’s anchor is bogus. It is either wishful thinking or, more likely it is someone who knows perfectly well that this is not the from the ark, and is abusing the situation to garner attention. I am not sure which and do not want to judge the motives of others.
A good friend of mine once confronted one of the purveyors of bogus Noah’s ark claims, asking him why he published bogus evidence. The man (I kid you not) admitted that he did it so that he could feed his family. He did not even attempt to defend his “evidence” but to defend his motives for deceiving people.
I am sorry to be so skeptical, but Christians have been made to look foolish on bogus Noah’s ark claims so many times that wisdom dictates our stance toward these claims ought to be a fairly strick skepticism. In the US we have a saying: Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. I think this applies to Noah’s ark claims. The good friend I mentioned above is Rex Geissler. He has done a fairly thorough study of the various ark claims over the decades. He is personally open to the possibility of finding a remnant, and has even gone on expeditions. His conclusion is that, up until now, the great number of claims have no validity. You can find a copy of his book by going to www.greatcommission.com.